Two Brock employees are set to retire this month after decades of service to the University.
Sharon Odell, Finance and Administrative Assistant with Facilities Management, and Catherine Foreman (BA ’08), Collections Manager with Library Collection Services, are retiring Saturday, April 30.
In Odell’s 52 years of service, she has enjoyed watching the University grow from only a few buildings to the many that shape the campus landscape today.
“Working in Facilities Management, I got to see all the different projects, and in the earlier years, I got to work with some of the contractors’ administration,” she said. “Back in the ’70s, I knew almost everyone. The University has grown so much that I don’t know everyone now. I really miss that.”
Odell began her Brock career in 1970 as an Accounts Payable Clerk and then became Secretary for the Director of Finance. After seven years, she transitioned to a role as Secretary for the Physical Plant, now called Facilities Management. Following her maternity leave in 1980, she worked in an academic office and then in Administrative Services for a few years before returning to work in Facilities Management for the remainder of her career.
A highlight of Odell’s time at Brock was reaching 50 years of service in 2020 — although she missed having an in-person celebration with her colleagues due to public health restrictions.
Her last day in the office is Friday, April 29. While she doesn’t have any grand plans yet for retirement, Odell has already begun her leisure activities. Last month, she experienced her first vacation in 12 years and spent two weeks in Los Angeles with her son and daughter-in-law.
Foreman started working at Brock in 1985 as a temporary employee filling a leave in the Library Cataloguing department. She was later hired full time in the Acquisitions department, which eventually merged with Cataloguing into what is now Collection Services.
“I’ve always appreciated the wide variety of duties in my position as well as learning and implementing new technologies and programs,” she said. “I’ve been fortunate to work with wonderful colleagues both in the library as well as in other University departments.”
When asked what her favourite memory of Brock is, she said there are many, but a highlight was being able to enjoy Brock’s beautiful location on the Niagara escarpment.
“I really enjoyed going for walks on the trail and having lunch breaks on the grounds, especially in the summer months with the outdoor market and music,” she said.
Although her official retirement date is Saturday, April 30, Foreman is using vacation time to end her tenure early. Her last day of work is Thursday, April 14.
In her retirement, she looks forward to spending more time with family and friends. Two days after she retires, she will be on a plane to Fort Nelson, B.C., to visit her son and his family.